Former opposition leader in National Assembly (NA) Raja Riaz said on Saturday that general elections would be held in February – three months later than the constitutionally allowed limit of 90 days that falls in November, a private TV channel reported. Speaking to a private TV channel, Riaz said there were always complaints that Balochistan had been deprived of its rights, which is why the caretaker prime minister was picked from the province. He denied having been given Kakar’s name from any external entity, and maintained: “I put forward the names independently.” Riaz, who despite being a PTI MNA had infamously acknowledged last year that he would contest the next elections on PML-N ticket, said that he had not reiterated those plans since assuming the opposition leader role. “I will reach a decision and hopefully inform you,” he conveyed to the channel. When asked if “level playing field” would be ensured in the upcoming polls along with the participation of the PTI in the electoral process, he said: “I cannot provide a definitive answer.” Raja Riaz also claimed that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi was released from prison in June this year after “he agreed to work against party chief Imran Khan”. When referred to Qureshi’s statement that the caretaker prime minister name was not proposed by Riaz, he said: “First ask Qureshi sahib under what agreement he was released from jail and is roaming freely and holding press conferences.” He said the PTI leaders are either in hiding or in jail, asking Qureshi to clear his position in this regard. “100% he is outside jail due to some agreement. Those who are still with the PTI chairman are either in jail or in hiding,” he added. When asked about the purported deal under which Qureshi was released from jail, the PTI dissident said that the PTI vice chairman had agreed or might have given in writing that he would work against PTI chief Khan and “minus” him from the party. Speaking on the same programme, Qureshi claimed newly-appointed caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar was neither a choice of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) nor Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). “Do you think that country’s important decisions can be taken by Raja Riaz,” Qureshi asked rhetorically. He also expressed hope that the interim PM-designate will ensure free and fair elections in the country, warning that controversial polls cannot bring stability to the country.